On June 6, SENER celebrated the 50th Anniversary of its Space Division at the Círculo de Bellas Artes in Madrid. This event, entitled ‘In the Best Company’, was attended by notable local and international figures from the institutional, community, and economic spheres.
The ceremony featured the participation of Spain’s Secretary General for Industry and Small and Medium Enterprises, Begoña Cristeto; the President of SENER, Jorge Sendagorta; the Vice-President of SENER, Andrés Sendagorta; the Director of Science at the European Space Agency (ESA) and Director of the European Centre of Space Astronomy at the ESA, Álvaro Giménez; and the company’s Director of Space and Defense, Diego Rodríguez.
During his opening address, Jorge Sendagorta took a journey back to the origins of the group, remembering SENER’s early days in Space and praising the work of the people who made it all possible: “There are only two Spanish companies that can say they have 50 Years in Space. It has been, and continues to be, an adventure in slow motion, because development in this sector almost always takes a long time, but at the same time there are few adventures for Humanity that are as fascinating”.
The Director of Space at SENER, Diego Rodríguez, presented a review of the company’s primary missions during its half-century of activity in the sector: “The company's first project was the launch tower for scientific rockets in Kiruna, but during these last 50 years we have worked on top-level missions such as Rosetta, MARES, Gaia, IXV, Solar Orbiter, MTG, Proba-3 and Vega”.
As part of his speech, Álvaro Giménez of the ESA emphasised that, “The European Space Agency has achieved unprecedented successes in the quest to understand our Universe. European industry, of which SENER is a magnificent example, has been one of the key elements necessary to allow these goals to be met”.
“We have talked about the past and the present, but we have to keep looking forward. SENER is firmly committed to playing an increasing role in the new challenges being planned in Space, and in a future that is already upon us”, said Andrés Sendagorta in his address to those attending.
For her part, Spain’s Secretary General of Industry and SMEs, Begoña Cristeto, was responsible for closing the ‘In the Best Company’ event and referred to the company by saying "In closing, I would like to one again congratulate SENER for these 50 years in space. Which we are sure have also been very valuable on corporate projects involving energy, and with infrastructures and transport. Your values are certainly in total alignment with the philosophy of the space industry: excellence, commitment to research, and international collaboration".
This event commemorates a half-century of success in the space industry for SENER, and it also represents a tribute to the people who were a part of SENER in the past and those who are part of the space team today, during this half-century of stellar achievements.
The event was completed by projecting a video featuring first-person narrations from people who are now able to reminisce about their own professional and personal experiences during this 50-year history of SENER in Space.